Operation Garage Organization

If you follow Puddy’s House on Facebook, you already saw the picture below which shows how bad the one corner of our garage looked.  And, if you don’t follow along on Facebook, hop on over and like our page. 🙂 I plan to show more quick updates in real time at Puddy’s House on Facebook – I just gave a sneak peak of our new couch today.

Garage - Before right side

Over the winter, I was searching Pinterest for some inspiration, and I posted some of my finds here.  Our after pictures don’t quite look like the inspiration I found, but what the inspiration did help with was thinking through what would make sense for our garage and how it would be best organized for us.

Now, back to some before pictures of our garage.  It looked BAD!  We have a little bit of everything stored in there.  Fortunately, it is contained to around the perimeter because we do park both of our cars in the garage.

Garage - Before full right side

Garage - Before full left side

Garage - Before left side

So, we took stock of what needed organized and headed to Lowe’s to see what we could find.  I already had those 2 short shelves in the picture above – I had gotten them free from work and figured we could use at least one of them in the garage.  At Lowe’s we found a nice large shelf, 2′ x 4′, that we thought would help us out.  And, the bonus was it was on sale for $79.

Garage - new shelf with gardening sports etc organized

We got the shelf put together and then we had to find the best spot for it.  We moved the tool organizer from this spot and put the shelf in its place.  The large shelf ended up housing most of the junk that had just been laying around.   The empty propane tanks and gas cans live on the bottom shelf with some concrete mix, spouting and plant baskets.  The second shelf has primarily gardening supplies.  The third shelf up got some of the tools – the leaf blower, shop vac and extra tool box.  The fourth shelf up has sporting goods: golf balls, fishing rods, fishing boots, tennis balls, etc.  You can barely even see the real estate signs anymore; they are laying flat on the top shelf, which also houses the chain saw.  The shelf worked well for us and is rated for plenty of weight.

Garage after full left side

Not much else remains on the left side.  The bike is still there, but only because we couldn’t find a ceiling or wall mount for it at Lowe’s.  That is still on our to-do list, but for now it is not in the way.  We already had the hanging racks for the chairs, tennis rackets, hoses, and weed eater.  The other area that really got cleaned up on that side was the front.

Garage - cabinets firewood and golf clubs organized

We stacked the firewood better and created a bit of a separator so that we could store both of our sets of golf clubs on the metal shelf.  The spare folding tables got tucked between the cabinet and the wall.  All of this freed up the space around the wheelbarrow so that it is easily accessible when we need it.  I did some minor organizing inside the cabinets, but they were in pretty decent shape when we started.  We keep the car cleaning supplies, tiki supplies, tools, extension cords, saws, and other flammables in the large cabinet. The short cabinet has nails, screws, caulk, and painting supplies.

The other side of the garage had a decent amount of work and reorganization too.

Garage  - after full right side

The yard tool organizer moved to this side.  And, we used one of the freebie shelves to organize our variety of shoes, as well as some of my DIY supplies.  I keep spare boards, a drop cloth, sander, stripping supplies on these shelves now. Its nice to know where it is, and this is also so that the mouse outside can’t get to my drop cloth again.

Garage - after yard tools shoes and painting supplies

The ladders used to take up pretty much the whole wall, but when we thought about it, we realized we could hang them vertically and minimize the space they took up.  It was nice to tuck two of the ladders into the little useless corner by the side door.

Garage - after ladders reorganized

So, overall we only spent $79 and have an organized garage that Bob and I both are very pleased with the results.  We can both get in and out of our cars easily and we also know where everything is supposed to be stored now too.

Garage - after full garage organized

Is your garage organized?  What do you store in there?  Any good organization tips or tricks to share?

Closet Reorganization

I’m a little slow getting to organizing in the new year, but it recently hit me that 2 areas were driving me crazy and need some organizational attention.  The first area was my night stand, which is where I was storing my jewelry.  The second area was our closet.

All of my necklaces were hanging on a cork board that I had covered in fabric and trimmed with ribbon.  I had most of my bracelets on the wire rack on the night stand.  I don’t know what its actually called, or even if it was the real purpose of the wire rack, because I bought it for a few dollars at the Goodwill.  The rest of my nightstand is very functional….a little lamp, a small decorative box that holds my phone charger and accessories, and our old alarm clock.

Closet Reorganization - Nightstand-jewelry Before

Our closet is a feature of our house that I love.  In my previous home, I always had to rotate clothes to other closets or storage areas based on season.  I don’t have to do that in our home, as there is enough space for all my clothes and some room for Bob’s clothes too.  The problem with that is that I don’t really have to purge.  It all just fits.  So, I have to really force myself to go through my clothes and get rid of ones that I don’t wear and/or don’t fit.

Closet Reorganization - Closet left side before

Closet Reorganization - Closet right side before

Closet Reorganization - Closet shelves-shoes-scarves before

But, as you can see just because there is room for everything, doesn’t mean it looks good, or it is very functional.  So, it was definitely time to go through the closet and purge and organize.  I had just gone through the closet over the summer, and it still felt too full.  This time, I took a different approach.  I made the goal of creating enough space in the closet that I could have a jewelry station within the closet.  That way, my closet got organized and I got a new organized place for my jewelry.  Bob was headed to Florida for several days on a guy/golf trip, so I decided that was the perfect time for me to reorganize.  The reason for waiting until he was away, was because I knew it always gets worse before it gets better….

Closet Reorganization - In Process - worse-before-better

I did my best to work with what I had, but in the end I had to spend a little bit of money to get the level of organization I wanted.  I bought a belt organizer ($6) and a hanging jewelry organizer ($10).

Closet Reorganization - New Belt and Jewelry hanging organizers

I also bought 3 hooks to install on the wall for my scarves.  They were $3.97 each at Lowe’s.  I was originally looking for something that had multiple hooks already assembled.  But, when I saw them at the store, they weren’t cheap and I thought the scarves would get too tangled together, so I bought the individual hooks so that I could stagger them on the closet wall.

Closet Reorganization - New hooks for scarves

After several hours of trying on clothes and making piles for trash, Goodwill, and sharing with my sister, I was done with the clothing portion of the organization.  I had removed enough clothes to have an area for my jewelry in the back of the closet by the mirror.  I hung the corkboard on the wall, and hung my new organizer right beside my hanging shoe organizer.

Closet Reorganization - Necklaces-Bracelets-Earrings-Storage

I added light to the area using the lamp that was previously on my nightstand.

Closet Reorganization - Jewelry station with lamp

The jewelry box and bracelet rack are sitting on top of 2 white shelves that were hidden in the closet before.  They were storing random items.  Now, they are used as additional shoe storage, which was accomplished by moving the adjustable shelves to make room for flats in the one shelf, and taller boots in the other shelf.

Closet Reorganization - New Jewelry station with shoes and scarves

Now, my scarves are on display so that as I am picking out my outfits, I can easily add my accessories too.

Closet Reorganization - Scarves on display

This is the most of the closet floor I’ve seen in a long time!  My clothes are separated by type: pants, suits, and dresses are on the left – sharing that side with Bob’s ties, shoes, t-shirts and suits.  I have a shoe rack for my heels on the floor under my pants and suits.

Closet Reorganization - Closet left side after

The right side of the closet has Bob’s pants and dress shirts, organized by color.  Then my short sleeve, 3/4 length, and long sleeve shirts, as well as skirts.

Closet Reorganization - Closet right side after

I feel so much better about the closet.  It was well worth the time spent, and I think I made smart organization decisions so that it is something I can maintain.  I’m still tweaking the changes to my nightstand, so I will share that once I get it finalized.  Has anyone else spent the new year organizing?  Do you organize your closet by clothing type and/or color?